Edith R. Matthai to Receive LACBA’s Shattuck-Price Outstanding Lawyer Award
“Edith is the embodiment of the type of attorney that this award represents,” said Patricia Egan Daehnke, LACBA President. “Edith has a well-earned reputation among the judiciary, colleagues, adversaries, and state leaders as a role model of civility, professionalism, and collaboration to improve the legal profession and our judicial system. Edith is a brilliant trial lawyer and compelling advocate. She is a remarkable lawyer and an inspiration to us all.”
“It is a great honor to join the past recipients of this award, all of whom have made extraordinary contributions to our community,” Ms. Matthai said. “Thank you so much, LACBA, for this incredible recognition.”
As a trial attorney, Ms. Matthai has represented attorneys in malpractice actions for more than 30 years. She handles matters arising from nearly every field of practice, including complex business transactions and litigation, probate and family law proceedings, securities litigation, intellectual property litigation, bankruptcy proceedings, and complex family law cases.
She has significant appellate experience, arguing cases that have formed legal principles and established the standards for attorney liability. In addition to representing attorneys, Ms. Matthai has represented judges and commissioners in disciplinary matters pending before the California Commission on Judicial Performance.
But her impact on the law goes far beyond advocating on behalf of her clients before judges and juries. She also has had a defining role in how trials are conducted.
Ms. Matthai is a past member of the California Judicial Council, the policy-making body of the California courts, and served on the Judicial Council of the California Advisory Committee on Civil Jury Instructions, which analyzed existing jury instructions and distilled its conclusions into plain-English jury instructions. She is the co-author of several court procedural books, including Matthew Bender Practice Guides (2003); California Civil Discovery, Vol. 1 and 2; California Pretrial Procedure, Vol. 1-3; and CEB California Civil Discovery Practice, Vol. 1 and 2.
She serves on the American Bar Association Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary, which reviews the qualifications of potential appointments to the federal bench and provides a pre-appointment rating to the White House.
In addition to serving as a past LACBA President and Trustee, she has held numerous leadership roles, including positions on the Board of Directors of the Dispute Resolution Services (now the Center for Civic Mediation) and on Projects Inc., and as a committee member of the Senior Lawyers Section and the Attorney-Client Mediation and Arbitration Services.
She is a past President of the California Defense Counsel, the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel, and the Los Angeles Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA).
Ms. Matthai is a former chair of the ABA Standing Committee on Lawyers' Professional Liability and has been certified by the California State Bar as a specialist in Legal Malpractice Law. She is also a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. In 2013, she was the first woman named the CAL-ABOTA Trial Lawyer of the Year and in 2008 was named by the California State Bar's Litigation Section as the California Trial Lawyer of the Year.
Ms. Matthai received her B.A. cum laude from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1971 and her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of Law in 1975.
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The Shattuck-Price Outstanding Lawyer Award was established in 1968 by the Los Angeles County Bar Association to honor two past presidents, Edward S. Shattuck and Ira M. Price II, who died in office. The award is presented to a lawyer who has shown extraordinary dedication to the high principles of the legal profession and to improving the administration of justice in Los Angeles County. For a complete list of Shattuck-Price recipients, please click here.